Read the full article by Dharna Noor (The Boston Globe)
“A state task force is calling on Massachusetts to regulate toxic chemicals known as PFAS in consumer products, provide funding to municipalities to clean up their water supplies, and conduct outreach efforts in impacted communities to ensure residents are aware of PFAS pollution.
The recommendations came as part of a report on how to address contamination by PFAS, a group of highly toxic manmade chemical compounds that have been found in many Massachusetts drinking water supplies. The task force, established as part of the fiscal 2021 budget, unanimously approved the recommendations on Wednesday.
PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances,have long been used in everything from cookware and food packaging to electronics and clothing and have been linked to an array of health problems, including hormone disruption, immune deficiency, and various cancers. Since they do not easily break down in the human body or the environment, they’re often called ‘forever chemicals.’
Thereport, which task force co-chair Representative Kate Hogan called a ‘massive undertaking’ in a press conference, lays out 30 recommendations on how Massachusetts could identify and regulate sources of PFAS and clean up contamination.
‘The extent of PFAS contamination is vast, and the time to act is now,’ Hogan and Senator Julian Cyr, co-chair of the task force, wrote in a letter introducing the report.RELATED: More communities are finding toxic chemicals in their drinking water
The proposals include increasing funding of the state’s Clean Water Trust for municipalities, public water systems, and homeowners to remediate contamination; establishing limits on PFAS in industrial wastewater; phasing out the sale of consumer products that contain intentionally added PFAS by 2030; and developing a loan program to fund the cleanup of private wellsand bringing back a state program to assist fire departments in replacing fire suppressants that contain PFAS.
Members of the task force say they are examining different legislative pathways to make their recommendations a reality. Some could potentially be added to legislation this session, Hogan said.”…